National Dish of Eritrea – Zigini with Injera

June 17, 2017  Nationalfoody Avatar
National Dish of Eritrea – Zigini with Injera


For Berbere Spice Blend
Small onion (diced) 1
Cloves garlic (minced) 2
Water 1 Cup
Salt 1 tbsp.
Paprika 1 tbsp.
Chili powder 1 tbsp.
All spice 1 tbsp.
Minced ginger 1 tsp.
White pepper ½ tsp.
Cloves 2
Cardamom seeds 8
Ground fenugreek ½ tsp.
Ground coriander ½ tsp.
Ground nutmeg ¼ tsp.
Ground cinnamon 1 pinch
For Zigini
Beef (cut into cubes) 2 lbs.
Cloves garlic 4
Can (14 oz.) diced tomatoes 1
Scallions (minced) 3
Berbere spice blend 4 tbsps.
Oil 5 tbsps.
Bunch cilantro 1
For Injera
Teff flour ½ lb.
warm water 2 cups
Sachet yeast ½
Salt ½ tsp.
Pinch baking soda 1

Zigini is a very spicy meat stew that is considered to be the national dish of Eritrea. One of its key ingredients is Berbere, a famous blend of spices used in African cuisine. Zigini is traditionally eaten with a type of flatbread called Injera.

Directions for Preparing Zigini with Injera

For Berbere Spice Blend

  1. In a shallow pan, roast the cardamom, coriander, ginger, fenugreek, cloves, nutmeg and cinnamon on low heat for two (0:02) minutes.
  2. Cool the roasted spices.
  3. Add garlic, half of the salt, onion and two tablespoons of water to the cooled spices, then mix and set aside.
  4. Toast the chili pepper, white pepper, paprika, allspice and remaining salt in a pan for one (0:01) minute.
  5. Pour in the rest of the water, stir and let simmer for fifteen (0:15) minutes, then cool.
  6. Pour the cooled berbere in a jar, top with a layer of oil and store in the refrigerator.

For Zigini

  1. Brown the beef cubes in a hot pan containing the oil.
  2. Add onions and garlic.
  3. After two (0:02) minutes, add the berbere.
  4. Cook for an additional two (0:02) minutes and then add the can of tomatoes and its liquid.
  5. Season with salt and pepper, then toss in the scallions.
  6. Simmer on low heat for two (2:00) hours.
  7. Add the cilantro and cook for an additional thirty (0:30) minutes.

For Injera

  1. Blend all the ingredients except the salt for one (0:01) minute.
  2. Sprinkle in the salt and blend for fifteen seconds.
  3. Transfer the mixture to a bowl, cover and refrigerate for forty eight (48:00) hours.
  4. Heat a griddle or skillet to high heat.
  5. Smear the griddle with a little oil.
  6. Use a ladle to spoon the injera batter onto the griddle; it should resemble a pancake.
  7. Cook for a minute or two, then flip.
  8. Continue making the injera pancakes till there is no more batter.Serve the zigini stew with injera.




3 hr 39 min
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